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Former Fianna Fáil Senator Des Hanafin Laid To Rest

The funeral Mass of former Fianna Fáil Senator Mr Des Hanafin took place at 12.00 noon today, in the Cathedral of The Assumption, Thurles, Co. Tipperary, with chief celebrant Rev Fr Tomas O’Connell.

The ceremony was attended by a large crowd, which included former Tánaiste and leader of the Progressive Democrats, M/s Mary Harney and her husband Mr Brian Geoghegan; former Independent politician & Senator M/s Avril Power with her Thurles born husband Mr Fionnan Sheahan (Journalist Independent.ie); former North Tipperary retired TD Mr Michael Smith; the currently serving Galway West TD Mr Éamon Ó Cuív; Tipperary Independent TD Mr Michael Lowry; Dublin Bay North TD Mr Sean Haughey; Meath East TD Mr Thomas Byrne; Leader of the Fianna Fáil party, Mr Micheál Martin, and Tipperary TD Mr Jackie Cahill, latter two who both led the Guard of Honour.

While in his 86th year, the much loved Mr Hanafin passed away on Thursday last, survived by his wife Mona; his daughter, the former Fianna Fáil Deputy Leader and Minister Mary Hanafin, and his son, the former Senator John Hanafin.

 To view video hereunder in high definition, please click HERE

Born on September 9th, 1930, in Thurles, Co Tipperary, Mr Hanafin was first elected to North Tipperary County Council in 1955 and subsequently served as Chairperson.

He was first elected to the Seanad in 1965 and retained that seat until 1993, before regaining same in 1997, before finally retiring from politics in 2002.  Mr Hanafin was unsuccessful in two Dáil elections for Tipperary North in 1977 and 1981.

Despite retiring from active politics in 2002, he continued to support efforts to retain the Eighth Amendment and pledged to support that campaign. He also opposed the marriage equality referendum in 2015.

Leading tributes to Mr Hanafin, Leader of Fianna Fáil, Mr Micheál Martin expressed his sadness at Mr Hanafin’s death, describing him as being “a man steeped in politics and community. Seeing both his children achieve high office was a source of great pride to him.”

Mr Hanafin’s remains reposed at Hugh Ryans’ Funeral Home, Slievenamon Rd, Thurles yesterday Saturday, before arriving at the Cathedral of the Assumption, Thurles at 8.30pm yesterday evening.

Mr Hanafin was interred, following his Funeral Mass today, in St Patrick’s Cemetery, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

To the family and extended relatives, go our heartfelt sympathy.

Go ndéana Dia trócaire ar a anam dílis.


Death Announced Of Senator Mr Des Hanafin

Senator Mr Des Hanafin. R.I.P.

It is with sadness we report the news that former Fianna Fáil Senator Mr Des Hanafin has passed away, aged in his 86th year.

Mr Hanafin is survived by his wife Mona, his daughter Mary (a former Fianna Fáil Minister and Deputy Leader, Dún Laoghaire), and his son John (also a former Fianna Fáil senator).

Born in Thurles, Co. Tipperary, in 1930, Mr Hanafin was elected to North Tipperary County Council first in 1955 and subsequently served as its Chairperson. He was first elected to Seanad Éireann in 1965 and held his seat until 1993.  He won back that seat in 1997, before eventually retiring from politics in 2002.

A former hotelier Mr Hanafin was once proprietor of the Anner Hotel, Dublin Rd, Lognafulla, Thurles during the 1960’s.

Funeral arrangements will be published here on Thurles.Info as soon as information is confirmed.

Go ndéana Dia trócaire ar a anam dílis.


Seamus Hanafin Elected Chairperson Templemore / Thurles Municipal District

Cllr. Seamus Hanafin

It will come as most welcome news this morning that Thurles based and Tipperary Co. Councillor Mr Seamus Hanafin, has been elected unopposed as Chairperson of the Templemore / Thurles Municipal District Council .

The post of Deputy Chairman to Mr Hanafin, was accepted by Cllr. Mr Eddie Moran who was proposed by the outgoing Chairman, Cllr. Mr Joe Bourke, and seconded by Cllr. Mr Michael Smith.

Sinn Fein Councillor Mr David Doran who had been proposed for the post by Cllr. Mr. John Hogan and seconded by Cllr. Mr. Joe Bourke, found himself unable to accept the post of ‘Deputy’, on offer.

Accepting the post of Chairperson, Cllr. Hanafin spoke of prioritising the need to use every means at his disposal, in respiring new vivacity into all town centres throughout the Templemore / Thurles Municipal District, thus ensuring that they become more viable and attractive to consumers.


Two Tipperary TD’s Disclose Political Donations

A total of 42 public representatives, including two TD’s from Co. Tipperary, have disclosed donations to the Standards in Public Office (SIPO), in all totalling €72,969.12.

This amount is more than double the 2015 donation total of €33,870.00, due in part to it being a General Election year.

A total of 259 Members or former Members were required to furnish donation statements in respect of the year 2016, as follows: – 158 TD’s; 60 Senators; 11 MEP’s, 19 Former TD’s, and 11 former Senators.

Members who were fully complied with the statutory requirements by the 31st of January 2017 deadline, numbered 246; while 13 others were somewhat late, but nevertheless all had complied their statuary requirement by February 25th 2017.

Under the Electoral Act, 1997, public representatives may not accept donations in any year of more than €200 in cash, and not more than €1,000 in total value from a single source. They must disclose any donations totalling €600 or more, received from an individual source.

The two Tipperary TD’s who received and accepted political donations were:-
Mr Alan KellyLabour Party.
Donor (A) Mr Michael Madden, No10 Graham Court Rye, New York USA, with value of donation being €995.00.
Donor (B) Mr Declan Kelly Castletown, Portroe, Nenagh, Co. Tipperary; with value of his donation being €999.00.
Total Donations, in full, to Irish Labour Party representatives amounted to €5,594.00.

Mr Mattie McGrathIndependents.
Donor Mr Kieran & Mrs Catherine Bourke, Cregg Rd, Carrick-on-Suir, Co. Tipperary, with value of donation being €1,000.00.
Total Donations, in full, to Independents party representatives amounted to €15,600.00.


Humanitarian Priest Fr Jack Finucane Passes Away

The humanitarian priest, and valuer of human life, Fr. Jack Finucane, passed away today at the age of 80.

Ordained in 1963; Fr. Jack was a brother to the late Fr. Aengus Finucane, latter a former Chief Executive of Concern Worldwide, and earlier a former teacher at Rockwell College, secondary school close to New Inn, Cashel, here in Co. Tipperary.

The brothers were both natives and ‘Freemen’ of Limerick; being aptly recognised in 2005 for their inspirational and tireless work with the starving of Africa and Asia. Fr. Jack, with his brother Fr. Aengus, tended to some of the poorest people in the world; from Biafra in Nigeria to Bangladesh and Ethiopia.

Fr. Jack would later became an adviser to Sir Bob Geldof and his Live Aid team, and in 1985, escort a young Bono (U2 fame) on his first trip to Ethiopia, greatly influencing latters future thinking.

This staunch belief by both men; based on the view that all human beings deserve respect and dignity and therefore should be treated as such, would lead to the formation of the organisation known as Concern Worldwide in 1968.

Fr. Jack and Fr. Aengus had been sent to Nigeria by the Holy Ghost Fathers and were at the ‘coalface’ in the distribution of aid, flown into Biafra by Concern and other relief organisations. Both Finucane priests had become involved in the distribution of this humanitarian aid, following the Nigerian government’s blocking of food supplies to the breakaway state of Biafra (Biafran War or Nigerian Civil War carried on from July 6th 1967 to January 15th 1970 with the loss of over 1 million lives).  This food blockade caused massive starvation and continued despite receiving, back then, worldwide condemnation. The Finucane priests organized food to be sent through makeshift airstrips, including one at Uli, Anambra.

Frederick Forsyth CBE, with Fr. Jack Finucane, latter who passed away today. 

The Royal Air Force pilot, novelist (70 million books), political commentator and spy, Mr Frederick Forsyth CBE, (Works include ‘The Day of The Jackal,’ ‘The Odessa File,’ ‘The Dogs of War’, ‘The Fourth Protocol,’ ‘The Biafra Story‘ and ‘Cry of the Innocent,’ latter film made here in Ireland), who was then a journalist covering the Biafran war, knew both Fr. Jack and Fr. Aengus; indeed Mr Forsyth regularly dined with both men close to Umuchima village, Uli, at the airstrip code named ‘Annabel Airport’, during his stay of some 2 years.

Both religious brothers were involved in using old Douglas DC6s and DC7s from the 50’s, together with old worn out Lockheed Constellations planes from a similar era, in their efforts to get sick children out and food provisions in, and while dodging Nigerian MiG-19 jets supplied by East Germany and manned by East German pilots.

Frederick Forsyth, wrote of the children airlifted out of Biafra, stating that these children were a “living, breathing monument”  to the work of Fr. Aengus Finucane and his colleagues.

Irish President Mr Michael D. Higgins stated today;  “His (Fr. Jack Finucane) commitment to the ethical basis for, as well as the practical application of humanitarian principles was exemplary.  Jack Finucane’s lifelong commitment to protecting the dignity of some of the world’s poorest and most marginalised people will stand not only as a lasting tribute to all that is good about mankind, but is exemplary in its invitation not to avert our gaze from our current challenges of global hunger and poverty.”

Go ndéana Dia trócaire ar a anam dílis.